Latest News from the Friends

8 May, 2020
Welcome to the May Newsletter with all the latest from the Friends of Kings Park.

Find out about news at the Friends of Kings Park.

Read on for news about how the Friends are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and plans for 2020.

In this issue

President’s Report

All volunteering work in Kings Park has now ceased and our two employees (Helena and Alex) are working from home. Nevertheless, some green shoots are starting to appear.

The first piece of good news is that we have arranged to sell 5,000 of our plants to Zanthorrea Nursery, for a revenue boost of around $18,000 for the Friends.

We are also likely to be granted financial assistance to cushion the impact of cancelled events and lost revenue from cancelled plant sales. We have applied for Commonwealth Government funds under the JobKeeper and Business Cash Flow schemes. We are also applying for Lotterywest financial assistance (through the Event Cancellation Relief scheme). If these applications are successful it is likely that the financial impact of the coronavirus on the Friends of King Park will be small.

As we had half expected, Lotterywest has decided not to fund any outdoor events this year. Therefore the grant of $100,000 for the Spring Festival in September will not be forthcoming.

Our plant sales for the remainder of the year are still up in the air. We have petitioned BGPA to give priority to allowing the Growing Friends back into the nursery as soon as possible, in order to tend to and grow our plants in preparation for future plant sales. An online plant sale in late May is still a possibility; although restrictions would have to be relaxed very soon for this to proceed. We will make a decision about the September plant sale when we are in a position to determine the number and quality of plants available for sale to the public. This will depend, of course, on when the Growing Friends are allowed access to the nursery.

At the moment the signs are looking good for a relaxation of restrictions and a resumption of volunteer activities in the near future. We are all hopeful that the second half of the year will get us back on track; although it will take some months before we fully recover from the COVID-19 setback.

Elsewhere in this newsletter, we have alerted members to the fact that the October AGM will elect a new committee to serve from October 2020 to October 2022. Some MC members are planning to nominate for another term of office and it is good that we will have some continuity of membership (provided, of course, that they are elected for another term). However, we are also keen to hear from prospective new members who could bring a fresh perspective and new ideas to the committee’s deliberations. We would like to meet anyone interested in nominating for the committee or for any office well in advance of October. Nominations will be called for in due course.

Best wishes

Zanthorrea Nursery

While our Growing Friends might not be in the nursery right now, they have been working hard behind the scenes to ensure that the hard work in preparing plants for our May Plant Sale did not go to waste. Zanthorrea have been a long-time supporter of the Friends and we’re thrilled that they agreed to purchase 5,000 plants for sale in their nursery, ensuring that that stock need not be discarded and that our members and the public still have access to our Native Plants.

This week, with the very generous support of BGPA staff and vehicles, we were able to load up the plants for transport to Zanthorrea where they are being sorted and prepared for sale. These plants are sold by Zanthorrea, so, unfortunately, FOKP members discount does not apply, however, we’re told they should be on display mid-to-late next week, so we encourage you to visit them for your Native Plant purchases.

A huge thank you again to Zanthorrea and to BGPA staff, particularly Tony, Grady, Amanda, and the Hort and Depot staff, for their support!

Volunteer Update

We miss our volunteers! And we know you miss coming to the park, but please be patient as we work with BGPA to establish a schedule for the return of volunteers that keeps everyone safe and complies with requirements.

We assure you, we will let you know as soon as we have a timeframe. If you recently expressed an interest in becoming a volunteer, keep your eye on the newsletter as that is where we will post our updates about new and upcoming opportunities.

Management Committee

Not all our volunteers are gardeners! The Friends of Kings Park Management Committee is a small team that sets the direction for the Friends and manages many aspects of our operations, and we are seeking new members this year. Have you ever considered giving back to the community by joining a committee?

All positions on the committee will be vacant at the 2020 AGM in October, but we are reaching out now so you have a chance to get to know us. Like to find out what is involved? Please email [email protected] (include your phone number if you would like to chat) with a quick paragraph about yourself, and we will be in touch.

Previous committee experience is not required, but familiarity with Kings Park and Botanic Gardens, or an interest in the volunteer or conservation sectors would be advantageous.

Help us plan for a vibrant future! Contact us and find out more about the Management Committee.

Aspects of Kings Park Gallery Shop

As dedicated members of the Friends of Kings Park, we are pleased to be able to continue to offer members a 15% discount on purchases on our online shop. Supporting local artists has never been as important as now.

To make a purchase head to our online shop and add products to your shopping cart.

Use the following code in the vouchers field at the checkout to receive your discount: 2020FOKP-CCWVQG37.

We also ask you to add your Friends of Kings Park membership number in the comments section of your order. The discount code can be used for multiple purchases until 30 June 2020.

Aspects is also pleased to offer free Australian domestic shipping on all purchases over $50.

Stay home and stay stylish!
Aspects of Kings Park Gallery Shop

Climate Watch

As we progress through April we hope that you are all keeping well and going out to get some exercise.

Although we cannot have any organised walks at present you should take the opportunity to walk yourself and record some of the plants which you see in the Climatewatch App. Anywhere that you see one of the listed plants you can record it as this will give more diversity than only recording the plants which you observe on the designated trails.

Apart from the Climatewatch App you can also carry out observations along the Bush Trail and we will catch up with the data input once we return to normality. Whilst walking along the South Perth foreshore we saw the flowers on the Allocasuarina fraseriana (Western Sheoak) which we have not noticed before and which we thought would be of interested to those who monitor the Bush Trail.

The red flowers on the female were obvious from a distance.

The male is insignificant.

Keep well, keep your distance and get out to observe the nature around you as the weather cools down.
Paul & Serene, Climate Watch